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Karen Winnick

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Karen B. Winnick

Karen B. Winnick is an author and illustrator.  Her books include historically relevant topics for children and young adults.  In 1996, she wrote Mr. Lincoln's Whiskers which tells the story of Grace Bedell and inspiration surrounding Lincoln's beard.   Mrs. Winnick is an advisory board member of the Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.  She resides in Los Angeles with her husband.  You can learn more about Karen Winnick and her works by visiting http://www.karenbwinnick.com.

 

Audio text - What Lincoln Means to Me:

The more I learn about Abraham Lincoln the more he becomes an inspiration to me. Lincoln grew into his greatness by taking a lesson from everything that happened to him. He was born into a racist society. Trusting his better nature, he struggled to overcome feelings within himself that he felt were wrong. He wrestled within his own mind to seek the truth of a situation, to become a better human being and to achieve wisdom.

Once, I visited the vault at the Huntington Library in Pasadena, California. I was awestruck at the chance to see the small book that Lincoln kept in his pocket to jot down thoughts and notes and keep clippings. In this book he questions the issues of his day. He seeks to understand them, to come to sound moral judgments.

Sometimes we’re surprised by the places where we uncover truths that impact our lives. Lincoln sought these truths in even the smallest places. When he was running for President, eleven year-old Grace Bedell wrote to him suggesting he grow whiskers because he’d have a better chance of winning the election if his face didn’t look so thin and sad. And Lincoln was humble enough to take her advice. As I was signing “best wishes” in my book, “Mr. Lincoln’s Whiskers” for a five year-old girl, she asked if I was writing “best whiskers.” I’ve been signing it that way ever since!